Survivor, Episode 1: Brains, Beauty and Brawn


We’re back! It’s another exciting season of Survivor, only with a little bit of a twist. This season, the contestants are divided into three tribes:

Brains: The tribe’s average IQ is 130, which is really not a high bar at all


Beauty: They have an average hotness of 7, which, again, meh


Brawn: This tribe includes Cliff Robinson, a former NBA player, so height!


The setting is, of course, beautiful. Cagayan, which is a province of the Philippines. So there’s beach, ocean, lush greenery, lots of bamboo, and snakes. Plenty of snakes. And things that look like snakes but have legs, which maybe makes them supersnakes?

The beauty team immediately identifies themselves as beauty, the Brains call themselves nerds, and Tony from Brawn says something that makes him sound like he’s been selected by the casting director for Jersey Shore.

Jeff makes each team select a leader. Each leader must decide who is the weakest in their group. Dave, the leader of the Brains, selects Garrett, who appears to be the strongest player in the game because he’s planning ahead. But the joke’s on Dave, because these three people are not out of the game. They get a chopper ride to camp and will make a decision that will impact the tribes.  The decision is to help themselves, or help their tribe—a clue, or an extra bag of rice. The brawny brain takes the clue to the immunity idol. Oh, and? He’s a professional poker player, and he’s got a twelve-pack. Garrett could win this thing. Trish from brawn goes for the bag of rice, and Morgan from beauty is really, really confused but goes for the idol.

Garrett finds the idol in the water near the rocks, and he loses his shirt and pants. Morgan is looking around the rocks like she doesn’t want to get wet and does not find the idol before her tribe gets back.

Woo (which is like the best name ever) from the Brawn team immediately recognizes Cliff Robinson. Rather than resent his fame and success, I think everybody’s just happy to have someone who can pluck fruit off of the top branches. Also, as the big burly tribe, they’re already chopping down trees, building huts, and moving mountains.

Oh good, J’Tia from Brains is a nuclear engineer. That comes in handy when you have to build a bamboo shelter. Unfortunately, it results in J’Tia ordering her teammates around, and if there’s one thing not to be on Survivor it’s bossy. Also, her plan is crap because their shelter collapses under the weight of one brain.

Come on in guys! The first Immunity Challenge is a cart through an obstacle course, gathering keys and chests, disassembling the cart, shoving it through sticks, putting it back together, and something about a dragon puzzle. The first tribe to finish gets a fire-making kit, the second tribe gets flint, and the losers get a trip to Tribal Council.

The brawn tribe has a huge lead, with the beauty tribe in second and the brain tribe not even close as they spill their puzzle pieces all over the course while Jeff makes fun of them the entire time. I’m surprised they don’t curl up into the fetal position with flashbacks to their years and years of wedgies and taking dodge balls to the face in the schoolyard.

Somehow, the beauty tribe picks up the pace on the puzzle and wins the challenge, with brawn in second. Which means the brains are headed to their first of what I predict are many trips to Tribal Council.


The brains tribe is sorting out who to send home, and all fingers point to J’Tia, other than Dave who is still gunning for Garrett. Then Kass does the second worst thing you can do on Survivor, which is telling the person you’re voting out that you’re voting them out. There’s plenty of time for J’Tia to scramble, and it sparks a backlash against David. I’m very worried about poor pale Spencer. Not because anyone wants to vote him out, but because he’s translucent. Lucky for him, it starts to rain.

Tribal council goes about as well as expected, with votes for David and J’Tia. The tribe votes out David because he’s kind of a jerk. Goodbye, guy who wears a blazer on Survivor. The nerdlings get their flint and head back to camp in the rain.

The next morning, Garrett realizes that Survivor isn’t fun. I’m not sure he’s ever seen the show before. Meanwhile, the women are overthinking fire instead of, you know, building a fire.

Over at the brawny tribe, Cliff is looking for a Robin to his Batman, and settles on Woo. Everyone on the tribe loves Cliff. Heck, I think I might love Cliff. But that gets Tony thinking that maybe Cliff needs to go. And Trish is working Lindsay’s last nerve with major doses of passive-aggressive. Hahahaha, Tony is building a spy shack so that he can find out what everyone else is talking about. I’m not even sure what that means, but it’s not going to end well for someone.


The next challenge is all about the water and getting the entire tribe into a bamboo cage half-submerged in water. Knots are untied, breaths are held, and heavy fish traps are removed. The tribes now have to move the fish traps underwater back to the beach. It looks exhausting, and somehow the brain tribe is in the lead with beauty treading water.

J’Tia struggles with the puzzle as Sarah blazes past her from the brawn tribe and beauty crawling out of the water. The brawn tribe wins the challenge, immunity, and a huge fishing reward. The beauty tribe is slamming that puzzle together as J’Tia freaks the heck out. And with that, beauty wins immunity and the brains tribe is going back to Tribal Council to, duh, vote out J’Tia.

Back at camp, Tony finds the clue to the hidden immunity idol in the fishing gear. He finds it pretty quickly and declares himself King Of The Junguuuuulllll! The brains camp gets awkward when Garrett tries to have a fireside chat about who’s going home when it’s abundantly clear that J’Tia has got to go. Also, this is not how you play Survivor. Tasha wants none of the groupthink, and Spencer thinks he’s a total idiot. The women get together and plan their big move, which is to get rid of the big guy before they get rid of them.

Oh no! They left J’Tia alone at camp and the crazy lady dumped all of the rice in the fire! Holy cow. And she was so close to not even going home! But now she’s totally going home.

Tribal council is fun. J’Tia says that she threw the rice in the fire to hurt Garrett. Jeff explains that there’s a reason blindsides work—they send the crazy person out of the game quietly, before they have a chance to do something crazy. But then it turns into Garrett stifling the game by not allowing private conversations. And then Garrett flat out says that he’s in an alliance with Spencer and Kass, which puts J’Tia and Tasha as the next going home. So…Garrett is going home?

Jeff reads the votes: J’Tia, Garrett, J’Tia, Garrett, ONE VOTE LEFT! Garrett! Whoa! He goes out with the immunity idol in his pocket. Big, bold move, brains. As Jeff says, “This is the oddest tribe I’ve ever seen.”

Next week, things get a little soggy.

Reprinted from

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditlinkedinmailby feather

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>